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FLEET LIBRARY | Research Guides

Rhode Island School of Design

Art & Design Research Skills: Inquiry

Research skills for advanced studio practice

Finding a place for research in art & design

art & design continuum

     inquiry <-----------------------------------> inspiration


art & design research






Inquiry is at the core of practice. It may begin with a specific question and work outward. Or start from a bird's eye perspective before identifying details.  It is one of the ways our minds work to create new understanding. A library is also like this - it embodies the potential to find and trace the specific in the universal and vice versa.

Research is a creative act; it mirrors the same stages and involves similar behaviors, processes and emotions you experience in the studio: the exhilaration of the initial inspiration, the brainstorming, trial and error, focused searching, serendipitous discovery, critical thinking, sheer work; review, iteration and reflection, critique/dialogue and the innumerable revisions before coming to a fully realized work.
By embracing research as part of your practice, the continuum between inquiry and inspiration has a wellspring to draw upon. Research can offer new paths of discovery and strengthen your inherent visual intelligence, tendencies and talents.